Common Types of Machetes
There are various types of machetes. One of the best known types is the Latin or bush machete, which has a straightback normal blade and is evenly weighted, which makes it perfect for agriculture and other outdoor needs.
The Kukri is a Nepalese knife which has an inwardly curved edge with three separate sections of the blade used for stabbing, chopping or for carving. The Bowie machete is a traditional US machete, based on the Bowie knife, and is great for skinning wild animals as well as for survival in the wilderness. The Panga originates in Africa and has a 16 to 18 inch blade which broadens on the backside. It is great for chopping, slicing and piercing. The Bolo is the Filipino variant of the Panga used for agriculture, chopping and for traditional martial arts. The Parang also has a thicker blade and is commonly used in Indonesia and Malaysia for agriculture and clearing up woods.
Since there is quite a choice of machetes available on the market, our team at Perfect Blades has carefully reviewed and hand-picked our top five best machetes available, so here are our top 5 best machete reviews.
My Top 5 Best Machetes
Ka-Bar 2-1249-9 Kukri machete
Our first pick is the Ka-Bar 2-1249-9 Kukri machete which has a strong 11.5 inch 1085 carbon steel blade, and an ergonomic and non-slip handle made of Kragon G thermoplastic elastomer. This machete has a total length of 17 inches, weighs 1.7 pounds and is very suitable for agricultural tasks, such as chopping grass and weeds. This model is made in Taiwan and is sold with a leather and cordura sheath. The Kukri is one well balanced machete which if kept dry and treated with mineral oil to keep dampness and water away from the blade could last for a very long time. Along with a good survival knife, it makes a good addition to your emergency survival kit.
Gerber 31-002289 Bear Grylls Parang Machete
The Gerber 31-002289 Bear Grylls Parang Machete is our next top pick for the best machetes currently available on the market. This particular machete has a 13.5 inch strong high carbon steel angled blade and a full tang construction for added stability and durability. The entire length of this machete is 19.5 inches and its weight is 19.4 oz.
The handle has a special ergonomic anti-slip rubber grip, and there is a lanyard cord which improved the grip security as well.
This machete is somewhat of a modern version of the traditional jungle machete used by the tribes, and can easily cut through branches, bushes and vines. So, it is very useful for agricultural and other outdoor clearing needs, it is easy to sharpen, and is very durable.
Ontario 6145 Military machete
The next model in our top 5 best machete list is the Ontario 6145 Military machete. This is one powerful tool and weapon. It has an overall length of 24 inches. Its blade is 1095 Carbon steel hardened to 50-55 HRC, and it is full tang for extra durability. The handle is made of molded plastic and is riveted for added resilience. This model produced is about as close to a military machete as possible. It does need to be sharpened when first purchased, and then to be maintained and sharpened periodically, but this is normal practice for any machetes you will choose to purchase.
Condor Tools & Knives Warlock Machete
Another favorite of ours is the Condor Tools & Knives Warlock Machete Knife. It has a 12.5 inch 1075 high carbon steel blade with an epoxy black finish. It features a very comfortable Micarta handle covering a full tang construction. It is a sharp and durable powerful tool, great for cleaning up camp sites, chopping branches, bushes and small trees. It is a serious tool which is definitely worth the investment.
Cold Steel Jungle machete
And finally, our last pick is the Cold Steel Jungle machete. With a serious 16 inch blade length and a thickness of the blade of 2.8mm, this is one very powerful tool. It is sold fully sharpened which is a plus. This is one heavy machete, so it is perfect for clearing out large areas with one slash, but it may be too heavy for some people, so our advice is to actually test it for comfort before buying it. The blade is sharp and durable, and overall it is an excellent machete which we highly recommend.
What to look for in a machete?
The machete is a traditional Latin American fixed blade large knife similar to a cleaver, used in agriculture as well as a weapon. The blade of a machete is typically from 10 to 28 inches long and around 0.12 inches thick, but in average, the blade is 18 inches long. The machete is a very powerful tool and weapon, which can come in handy in a wide variety of situations and for different tasks.
But, there is a wide variety of different types of machetes available on the market, so there are features which you should be looking for when choosing the best machete for your needs.
The first feature obviously is the length of the blade. When you are picking a machete you need to keep in mind whether you prefer it is more portable (thus shorter) or whether you prefer one with greater reach (thus the longer blades). You can smaller areas of grass and plants with a smaller machete but then again, carrying a smaller one around is much easier.
BLADE COMPOSITION AND STYLE
The other important feature to look for in machetes is the blade composition and style, or in other words – the metal it is made from. Most commonly good quality machetes have stainless steel or carbon steel blades, and some combine the advantages of both and have carbon stainless steel blades. The carbon steel blades are cheaper and will remain sharper for a longer time, but are more difficult to sharpen and are more prone to rusting than stainless steel ones. Stainless steel blades are softer than the carbon steel ones but can be sharpened easily. If you are planning to use the machete for agricultural needs, the carbon steel blade will probably be the better choice of the two. Naturally, machetes which have blades made of a high carbon stainless steel are the best option because they combine the durability and resilience of both types.
Another thing to look for is the tang of the machete you are planning to buy. Look for machetes which have a full tang which extends to the handle in order to guarantee that it is strong and durable even when used for strenuous cutting and chopping tasks.
The material of the handle is also important. Wooden handles offer a better grip, but can be damaged by water and moisture. Plastic handles will endure the wet conditions, but plastic handles can be slippery and thus be dangerous. The best choice for a machete handle material is the Micarta handle, which is made of a number of resilient layers of different materials. This type of handle is strong, durable and offers an excellent grip.
Last but not least, always make sure that the handle style is suitable for your needs. It should fit comfortably in your hand and should provide safety from the blade while in use.
Top machete brands
There are many producers offering machetes on the market. Some of the top brands include: Condor Tool and Knife from Germany, Oregon-based Gerber, Esee and Cold Steel. Ka-Bar is one of the top producers of high quality machetes and knives, and Tramontina is the best known producer of the Brazilian bush and sugar cane machete.